Getting married is very exciting! First the proposal, then the ring, and of course the big day!
But getting married isn’t only about the wedding-the quality of the marriage that follows is what really counts. So how do you make sure you start on the right path? Read on for the 10 most important things you should discuss before marriage.
1. Decision Making
Since marriage is all about compromise, the art of negotiation is an important skill. Make sure you and your partner agree about how the relationship should work. Sharing decisions and deciding together who should decide what requires listening, negotiating, and problem-solving skills. You don’t need to be perfect at it, but you both need to understand what you’re working to.
2. Chores and Tasks
Are you taking care of laundry and cleaning while you man does yard and housework? You should never assume these tasks will be divvied up-talk about them. Relationship roles have been changing for years and differ from family to family. Talking about these tasks before marriage gives you a foundation to build later discussions if and when you find you aren’t happy with the situation.
Do you both want children? How many? And if you do have children, how do you plan to raise them? For some people having children seems like an obvious part of marriage-but not everyone. Discussing how many children you want before marriage can save you the trouble of finding out your partner never wants kids after marriage.
4. Religion and Values
You’re probably already marrying someone who shares the same values as you. But religion and values are important to discuss because people usually take these things much more seriously after marriage, and especially serious after having children.
5. Connection to Family
Will you spend Christmas Eve with his family, and Christmas day with yours? These details may not seem too important now, but they can become a major source of conflict with families if everyone feels they’re not getting enough of your time. Family devotion can cause future conflict if you haven’t accepted one anothers importance of family.
Career paths usually change over time, so you need to know that your partner will be supportive and respectful of your decisions with your career, and that you will be the same with theirs.
You should be able to openly and freely discuss sex with your partner. Always be open and honest and willing to communicate about it. Make sure that you can both talk about sex comfortably because sex that’s never discussed can become unsatisfying to one or both of you.
Are you a saver while your partner is a spender? Money troubles are the leading cause of relationship problems, and it’s important to discuss them before they get out of control. Agree on budgets and money spending habits that fit both of your needs.
9. Time Together
Do you plan on spending every Sunday with your partner watching movies? Your partner may have something else paned for their Sundays. Discuss these things and don’t assume what your partner would like to do-it can lead to unnecessary disappointment.
10. Drugs, Alcohol, Gambling
By the time you decide to get married to your partner, you’re probably already well aware of any addictions they may have. If something is serious enough to require help, discuss how you’ll handle it together. Decide if one of both of you should seek counseling and be sure you agree and deal with it together.
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